*Spoilers obviously below if this is a book you are still reading and are not caught up with*
The Secret Origins of Tony Stark has turned the world of Iron Man upside down. All it took was one revelation and that was enough to change your views on Tony’s whole life up to this point. If you thought you knew the whole tale, Gillen managed to throw in a twist which opens up the door to a new world, and many more opportunities for Tony and his family. For once he doesn’t have all the answers, just the truth which was as shocking for him as it was for us at the very end of the story. Having to face the harsh reality of his true origins. This story gave focus to the biggest sacrifice his father had made in order to make sure his wife could give birth to a healthy child. With the aid of Dum Dum Dugan, Thunderbolt Ross, Jimmy Woo, and some others, Howard was able to pull a fast one on a morbidly obese alien gangster and steal away 451. Overall it is a fun story, serious of course when Tony comes to realize his true beginnings, but the heist was fun knowing how heroic his dad is and how many connections he had around the world. For someone who doesn’t have a suit, Howard Stark has just as much skills as Tony, and maybe even more.
Let me cut the build up for those who are caught up with the book and just say that Tony is adopted. This billionaire, playboy, and genius was not the child that Howard Stark worked so hard to save. He was the child he adopted to replace that baby, Arno, after he accidentally created some health issues for it while saving it. A robot called Recorder 451 wanted to help save the baby and for him that meant turning the baby into a technological messiah. But that didn’t mean that Howard and his wife fully trusted him, and had reason not to since 451 did in fact do something against their will which was implant a genetic neutering system which would kill Arno at the age of 30. That is when Howard removed it and accidentally created those health problems. Seeing how 451 would be very pissed that is where they hid Arno and adopted Tony in his place.
We also know that this is like the follow-up to a mini-series from the early 2,000s featuring the same key players mentioned in this story. The implication that Iron Man 2020 could be the Stark from this story is pretty interesting. There is also a Spider-Man story that features Arno traveling to the past to locate a child whose retinal patterns can deactivate a powerful bomb that will destroy a city in his time. He ends up in a battle with Spider-Man; who misunderstands his intentions.
So the question now is, what comes next? Yes this was a big revelation, but it just creates so many questions and you are left anticipating what happens next now that the two Stark brother are united and having plans for the future of the world, to better the world. Of all the secrets that could be hidden from Tony, would you ever have believed that he was adopted? Let alone having a brother who he didn’t know existed till now? That is storytelling right there and a good way to explore more of Tony’s world, and Arno’s as well now that he is free to do what he was really created to do. So many opportunities to take advantage of their combined genius considering the direction the Marvel Universe has been taking.
So what comes next?